The domino effect of hiring a new head coach and the end of the season is taking its toll on the Florida Gators, as they've lost their first player to the NCAA transfer portal since the 2021 regular season came to an end. Defensive lineman Dante Zanders (formerly Lang) will look elsewhere to finish his college career, according to Matt Zenitz of On3Sports.
Zanders, a redshirt junior, spent all four years of his college career with the Gators, beginning his time at UF as a tight end before moving over to the defensive line in 2020. He finishes his Florida career with 11 tackles and half a sack.
A former three-star recruit out of Boca Raton (Fla.), Zanders enrolled at Florida over Arkansas, Duke, Cincinnati and others among his 23 scholarship offers. Zanders should have one year of eligibility remaining at his next stop as a graduate transfer.
New head coach Billy Napier and his defensive staff will have some work to do in the trenches upon arrival in Gainesville, as Zanders' departure is far from the first that is expected to happen across the Gators' defensive line.
Fellow upperclassmen linemen Zachary Carter, Antonio Valentino, Daquan Newkirk and Tyrone Truesdell are currently fifth-year seniors who are set to run out of college eligibility at the end of this year, unless any of them are granted an additional year due to COVID-19 pandemic waivers. Carter, one of Florida's top contributors on either side of the ball, is off to the NFL and has already accepted a 2022 Senior Bowl invitation.
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